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And it has been close to a hundred years since the uranium-238 decay rate was first determined.

A recent survey of the rubidium-strontium method found only about 30 cases, out of tens of thousands of published results, where a date determined using the proper procedures was subsequently found to be in error.

Radiometric dating is self-checking, because the data (after certain preliminary calculations are made) are fitted to a straight line (an "isochron") by means of standard linear regression methods of statistics.

The slope of the line determines the date, and the closeness of fit is a measure of the statistical reliability of the resulting date.

Thus in this case, as in many others that have been raised by skeptics of old-earth geology, the "anomaly" is more imaginary than real.

Other objections raised by creationists are addressed in [Dalrymple2006a].

The differences actually found in the scientific literature are usually close to the margin of error, usually a few percent, not orders of magnitude!Vast amounts of data overwhelmingly favor an old Earth.Several hundred laboratories around the world are active in radiometric dating.In the particular case that Morris highlighted, the lava flow was unusual because it included numerous xenoliths (typically consisting of olivine, an iron-magnesium silicate material) that are foreign to the lava, having been carried from deep within the Earth but not completely melted in the lava.Also, as the authors of the 1968 article were careful to explain, xenoliths cannot be dated by the K-Ar method because of excess argon in bubbles trapped inside [Dalrymple2006].

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This technique helps identify post-formation geologic disturbances because different minerals respond differently to heating and chemical changes.